Original Articles

  • CalHHS Secretary Extends Mask Mandate to Mid-February

    Mark Ghaly, M.D., MPH, California Health & Human Services Agency (CalHHS) secretary, has extended California’s indoor mask mandate by another full month. The masking requirement intended to combat the coronavirus pandemic now runs through February 15. While citing a recent surge in the state’s positivity rate to over 21 percent, Ghaly also noted data on […]

  • Fed-OSHA seeks suggestions for strengthening VPP

    Fed-OSHA is holding a stakeholder meeting July 17, in Washington, D.C., to discuss the future direction of its Voluntary Protection Programs. The agency’s aim is to “reshape VPP so that it continues to represent safety and health excellence, leverages partner resources, further recognizes the successes of long-term participants, and supports smart program growth.” Fed-OSHA is […]

  • Cal/OSHA Seeks Huge Penalties in Refinery Explosion

    The Division of Occupational Safety and Health has cited ExxonMobil Refining for 19 alleged violations following an investigation into the February 18 explosion at the company’s Torrance refinery. The incident only slightly injured four workers, but investigators concluded that management had been aware of hazardous conditions at the unit in question, yet took no steps […]

  • Standards Board Finally Gets Seats Filled

    Gov. Jerry Brown has reappointed four current members of the Cal/OSH Standards Board and named two new members to Cal/OSHA’s rulemaking body. The appointments are being said to provide both stability and new faces to the board. The newly appointed members are Robert Blink, 62, of San Francisco, and John Sacco, 60, of Rocklin. Both […]

Curated Content Articles of Interest from Around the Web

    News Digest 5-24-2022

     

    Painter falls 25 feet at Massachusetts restaurant jobsite

    A painter fell about 25 feet while working on the outside of a building at the location of a Burlington, Massachusetts restaurant on Friday morning, and suffered a serious head injury. The incident was the second involving an employee in Burlington in four days. Fed-OSHA is investigating. NECN

     

    West Virginia mail carriers report safety issues due to lagging truck maintenance

    U.S. Postal Service employees in West Virginia are reporting vehicles with worn brakes and failing steering equipment. A garage that repairs mail trucks for several parts of central and southern West Virginia reportedly is behind on maintenance, and had a backlog of more than 150 late preventative maintenance inspections as of the end of 2021. Charleston Gazette-Mail

     

    Bismarck Tribune calls for stiffer fines for oilfield related violations

    In the wake of several citations issued to employers doing work in North Dakota’s oil patch, the Bismarck Tribune editorial board has come out in favor of Fed-OSHA issuing stiffer fines for safety violations in oilfield work, noting that one cited company’s violations “also put the public at risk during the transportation of explosives.” Bismarck Tribune

     

    Hawaii fire crews complain about unsafe conditions at training area

    The U.S. Army is addressing complaints by federal firemen about unsafe conditions at Pohakuloa Training Area, according to an Army official. Hawaii Tribune [may require registration]

     

    Florida utility pleads guilty in death of four employees

    Tampa Electric Co. has pleaded guilty in federal court to willfully violating a Fed-OSHA regulation that resulted in an explosion at the Big Bend coal-fired power plant in 2017 that caused the deaths of five employees, when hardened slag that had accumulated at the top and the bottom of a tank came loose and and sprayed the area with molten slag as the employees performed high-pressure water blasting. The utility admitted in a plea agreement to willfully failing to hold a pre-job briefing with the employees that included procedures for the water-blasting work. Patch

     

    Family of man who died after falling through Pittsburgh skylight files lawsuit

    The wife of a bricklayer who died after falling through a roof skylight as he did restoration work at a South Park, Pennsylvania building last year has filed a lawsuit against the county and contractor. The skylight wasn’t readily visible, according to the lawsuit, and when the employee struck it, it gave way and he fell through it to the concrete floor 21 feet below. The lawsuit also alleges there was no fall protection on the roof or covers on the skylights. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review/TribLive